As January progresses, your willpower may be flagging. Remember, it takes three weeks to form a new habit, and another nine to establish it.

But now is the critical time to stay strong. By resisting short-term temptation, you can move forwards and achieve the goals you have set in your professional and personal life.

Here are 3 hacks to bolster your willpower:

1 Remember to relax

Stress interferes with willpower. The more relaxed we are, the more we will achieve our willpower goals.

So get relaxing. Join a mindfulness or meditation class. You need to do it at least once per day – three times is better- but it will help immediately. Relaxation increases your longevity to take on more willpower challenges!

2 Practice makes perfect

Willpower is a mindset, which can be improved with practice, but is limitless as to what can be achieved.

Practice resisting temptation today. Start small with resisting a piece of chocolate then resisting going home instead of going to the gym.

Get the willpower habit.

3 Streamline your life

If you want to achieve a willpower challenge, streamline other bits of your life so that you can focus.

Good examples are President Obama who has a wardrobe full of exactly the same suits so no decisions have to be made each morning what to wear. Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook has the same reasoning, wearing only grey T-shirts.

One decision less in a packed schedule.

And remember

  • Willpower is ‘the ability to overcome instant gratification for long-term goals. We are in constant conflict with two parts of our brains: our higher brain, the prefrontal cortex, which makes rational decisions about what’s best for us; and the lower brain with its pleasure principle of ‘I want it now’. The key when faced with temptation is to stop, breathe and remember this
  • If you believe you have it you do. Research which looked at groups of people asked to resist temptation discovered the major differentiator was belief in their own willpower.

Further reading:

To learn more, read Ros Taylor’s book ‘Willpower: discover it, use it and get what you want’, available now on Amazon